What does that mean for me?
If you are Māori or Pasifika living with diabetes, you now have easy access to the new diabetes medicines, empagliflozin and dulaglutide. These medicines are fully funded, and you only have to pay $5 for a 3-month prescription.
It is the first time Pharmac has explicitly included ethnicity within their Special Authority (access) criteria. This is an intentional, proactive move to address access to medicines for population groups who are at high risk of complications from type 2 diabetes.
What are the benefits of empagliflozin and dulaglutide?
Empagliflozin and dulaglutide lower your blood glucose and also protect you from having a heart attack or stroke. They also have other benefits such as weight loss and reducing kidney problems associated with diabetes.
Why is diabetes a concern for Māori and Pasifika people?
Research has highlighted that Māori and Pasifika people have higher rates of diabetes in Aotearoa New Zealand. Māori with type 2 diabetes are 7 times higher than non-Māori to die from diabetes-related causes and it is predicted that 1 in 4 Pasifika people will have the condition within 20 years.
Māori and Pasifika people are also at greater risk of developing complications from diabetes, such as heart disease, kidney failure and foot amputations. Keeping your blood glucose and blood pressure under better control can reduce complications from type 2 diabetes.
How can I access these medicines?
It is best to talk to your doctor. Your doctor knows you and your situation best. If they think you will benefit from these medicines, Pharmac has made it much easier for you to get them.
Where can I learn more?
Learn more about Pharmac's You are a priority campaign.
Learn more about the new medicines empagliflozin and dulaglutide.
Learn more about type 2 diabetes and how you can prevent it if you have prediabetes.